16 NOVEMBER 1907, Page 29


[TO TILF EDITOR OF THE "SPECTATOR; SIR,—I have just read Sir Henry Campbell-Ba,nnerman's speech on the Lords. It is that of a skilful party leader as well as a. highly respected man. But is it that of a statesman reviewing calmly and carefully, with a view to a momentous change, the fundamental institutions of his country ? The view of the speaker seems narrow, his temper angry and impulsive. There is more in his speech about his Scotch Holdings Bill than there is about general reform of the Lords. The tone, far from being that of calm and broad- minded statesmanship, is almost that of a personal enemy. Can the speaker be supposed to have fully realised the conse- quences of the revolution on which he is embarking, and which would put, not the country only, but the whole Empire, including Hindostan, absolutely in the power of a single demagogic as well as democratic Assembly elected perhaps by the passing passion of the hour, which one day gives an over- whelming majority to the Ministry of the Boer War, and next day a majority still more overwhelming to its opposite ? The crisis is evidently felt to be serious; have you, to meet it, a calm, large-minded, and broadly patriotic statesman ? We in Canada look on with interest.—I am, Sir, &c.,